All the good stuff people have said about us!
Three years ago, the idea that I could be surrounded by a caring, supportive group of like-minded people seemed like some utopian dream. It might as well be set on a cloud, where we all sprout wings and float around like butterflies. Yes, it seemed that far-fetched and impossible. Experiencing the worst depression of my life, I withdrew from friendships, suffered from low self-worth. I was told I had a cognitive thinking disorder, and that the negative stories my mind conjured on a daily basis perpetuated my feelings of low self esteem. I isolated myself to cope. I was not accustomed to these long bouts of doldrums that I couldn’t just snap out of, so I grew more hopeless. Thoughts of harming myself were increasingly more common. I hated the man I was.
One day I was asked about my job. I dismissed it, not being the most career-oriented. When asked what I would rather do, I talked about my love of writing. I had always been drawn to writing, but rarely practiced it. I didn’t think myself a good writer at the time but believed maybe with the right guidance I could be. All that said, the idea of putting my own writing into the public sphere was terrifying and so focused on all the reasons not to pursue it: I didn’t have the time. I thought I should write more before joining. I had looked up the Alexandra Writing School and it sounded too professional, or too advanced in skill level for a newbie like me. But, with the coaxing of a close friend, I signed up for my first AWCS short story class. I was petrified.
I’ve now been a member of AWCS for over three years, having enrolled in multiple classes – both novel and short story – and am supremely grateful for their persistence in fostering an open, caring community dedicated to the pursuit of writing. There is such a mutually shared desire for writing, and not even to be the best but just to see it through – to develop confidence in your literary voice. Even without writing, just having a collective of amiable souls under a single literary umbrella gave someone like me ambition – an attainable goal I could work toward on my own volition – something I hadn’t had in a long time. I’ve since developed my own group of nerdy, literary friends from various AWCS classes, and I wouldn’t trade them for anything. They’re my anchor and have become some of my closest companions. The biggest change in my life brought on by AWCS was that I began to identify as a writer. We all battle through the same author struggles, and there’s solace in that sort of shared perseverance.
AWCS has, without any doubt, bettered my life. I would recommend them to any person who may even have the inkling of an urge to write. At worst, you may just fall into a great group of friends.
Re – Novel Middles
If you’re stuck with your project or you’re having problems putting it all together this is a great course to help you onto the right track.
Wonderful creative space for writers and story tellers!
Mapping a Novel was just the course I needed. I’m a new novelist, and find myself bewildered by how to go about the process. This course helped me organize my thoughts, generate new ideas, have access to feedback in a kind and supportive environment and reduce the number of frustrating re-writes I was experiencing. Heartily recommended!!
AWCS is unique in providing short classes in creative writing. This strategy complements other writing programs in the city.
Re: The Artist’s Way – Do you feel blocked or have an inkling there’s an artist lurking below the surface? If you are brave enough to stick with the process and open to Caroline’s guidance, this course can be life altering.
Creative Writing Level II has taught me writing, critique and editing methods and has encouraged me to continue with my writing projects and get them ready for publication
Oh gosh this is tough. I think I’ve written and erased what I wrote in here about 5 times. For me, the workshops are inspiring, I loved that the instructor read pieces of great work out loud.
If you are looking for a beginner class to help you develop your characters, plot and creative writing skills, these are amazing courses!
I feel so good to be part of AWCS!
I started writing late, in my 30s, and knew I had a lot to learn. In 2010 I became a member, and signed up for my first writing class ever, an ambitious year-long novel course. I was in way over my head. So green that if you stuck me in the ground I’d grow. The instructor and other students knew it. But instead of letting me sink, they banded together and taught me to swim. AWCS not only opened the doors to a vast wealth of knowledge, but also an incredible community of writers that have come to be my teachers, mentors, and closest friends. I’ve had the opportunity to study and to pass the knowledge on to others. What I love most about AWCS is their vision and commitment to the development of craft and creativity. Since that first class I’ve had over a dozen stories appear in journals and anthologies, my short story collection has been published, and I’ve got a novel coming out very soon. I would not be where I am today without AWCS and the support of its members.
Pen to Paper was a great class for beginners or if you just need some basic creative writing prompts or technique reminders. Your basics are key for a solid foundation! The atmosphere during class was fun, low pressure and nonjudgmental. I would definitely recommend this class.
The 10-minute plays was an excellent way to focus on good story telling that applies to ALL genres.